It was 1977...
Chuck Woodstock, with his family’s pizza sauce recipe in hand, started the first Woodstock’s Pizza in Corvallis, Oregon in 1977. He wanted to create a fun hangout for college students from nearby Oregon State University. But more than that, he wanted to give them great pizzas, salads and beer, and at a good value. Chuck insisted on putting more toppings on the pizza than any of his competitors. His goal was to get a taste of every topping in each bite you took of his Woodstock’s pizzas. Woodstock’s was an immediate success, and before long, Chuck started looking for opportunities to grow the business.
Chuck teamed with one of his loyal employees and a great friend, Mike Chew, and started opening Woodstock’s Pizza parlors in California. Chuck and Chew wanted to replicate Woodstock’s success with college students in Corvallis, so they looked for locations near major California campuses. They began in San Luis Obispo (Cal Poly) in 1980. In 1982 they opened in Isla Vista, next to UC Santa Barbara. Then they went to Chico (CSU Chico) in 1983, San Diego (near SDSU) in 1985, and lastly, they planned to open in Davis in 1986.
In order to carry on the Woodstock’s vision in each of their new restaurants, Chuck and Chew looked for loyal current employees who demonstrated the drive and energy needed to successfully open in new markets. One of those employees was Jeff Ambrose, who started as a delivery driver in Corvallis in 1981. He was promoted to Assistant Manager and helped open the Isla Vista location, and subsequently was chosen to become General Manager and part owner of the San Diego location.
Sadly, both Chuck and Chew were killed in a private plane crash in 1985. Their ownership shares in the five California restaurants were divided between their families, and the growth strategy they had planned stalled. The Oregon restaurant was legally separated from the California Woodstock’s, and is solely owned now by Chuck’s wife, Carol Lee Woodstock.
For information on the Corvallis restaurant, please visit www.woodstocks.com.
Jeff Ambrose was promoted to President of the California restaurants in 1990 and moved the Administrative offices to San Diego. In 2001 he purchased the California restaurants from Chuck’s and Chew’s family members. He now shares ownership with his team of managers, most notably Tom Soucek, Vice President of Operations.
After purchasing the company, Jeff and Tom began a major refurbishment of the current restaurants. They doubled the space in their Davis location, and they moved to new locations in Chico and San Diego. A new fast-service Woodstock’s restaurant was opened on the campus of UC Santa Barbara in 2006. It is called A Slice of Woodstock’s at the Arbor. Unlike the other Woodstock’s restaurants, this restaurant does not have a dining room, does not serve alcoholic beverages, and has a limited menu.
In 2007 Woodstock’s opened in downtown Santa Cruz. This location has a unique look with its outdoor heated, covered patio, fire pit and moveable glass wall that integrates both inside and outside dining.
And now, in February of 2010 Woodstock's proudly announces the latest edition to the family: Woodstock's Pacific Beach!
Our mission is to earn loyal customers and team members who uniquely regard Woodstock’s as the Ultimate Pizza Experience.
To earn the distinction of being the Ultimate Pizza Experience we will:
• Prepare every customer’s meal with individual attention.
• Use the freshest, best tasting ingredients.
• Consistently create outstanding, unique pizzas and accompaniments that are widely-regarded
as the best ever, anywhere!
• Treat each and every customer with friendliness, respect and courtesy.
• Provide outstanding value that keeps customers returning with uncommon frequency.
• Be recognized as a fun and outstanding place to work.
• Provide a fun-filled festive atmosphere.
Woodstock’s will encourage our team members to work hard and have fun.
Woodstock’s will be regarded as a reputable, well-run company by all of our business partners and team members.
Woodstock’s will strengthen and give back to the communities we serve by fostering partnerships with local non-profit organizations.
Voted “Chico’s Best Delivery” -CN&R Readers’ Poll
Voted “Yolo's Best Pizza" - Davis Enterprise Readers’ Poll 2005 & 2008
Voted “Best Pizza" - California Aggie, Best of Davis 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011 Readers’ Pol
Voted UCSB's Best Pizza 22 times! –Daily Nexus
Voted San Diego's Best Pizza - Revolt Magazine
Voted Pacific Beach's Best Pizza, Best New Restaurant,Best Place for a Birthday Party & Best Family Restaurant - Beach & Bay Press
Voted San Diego's Best Pizza 2004 -AOL's City Guide
Voted San Diego's Best Pizza Restaurant! –SignOnSanDiego.com's Online Readers' Poll
Voted Best Pizza in San Diego County
Named Pizza King of San Diego –The Union Tribune
Voted SDSU’s Best Pizza Place! - Daily Aztec’s best of state Readers’ Poll
Voted San Diego’s Best Pizza! - CityBeat Magazine’s Readers’ Poll
2nd place (2009, 2010 & 2011) BEST PIZZA in the Metro (now Santa Cruz Weekly) Goldies
3rd place (2008) BEST PIZZA in the Metro (now Santa Cruz Weekly) Goldies
Voted "Best Pizza of San Luis Obispo" (23 times) - The New Times Readers' Poll, San Luis Obispo
Voted Cal Poly’s Favorite Pizza! - Mustang Daily 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 & 2012 Readers’ Poll
"Award of Quality" - National Academy of Restaurant Evaluation
Voted “Best Pizza” (2 times) - Telegram-Tribune’s First & Second Annual Readers' Poll